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Chagford - Crossing the Dairy Stream



Hi All


When designing and building a micro layout you have to make the most of every cm of layout frontage. That is the reason that Chagford has a curved instead of strait frontage, with the curve, your frontage is longer. The length of the frontage determines the number of discrete scenes which can be fitted it. The layout is designed to be viewed at eye level.



The dairy stream ran between the dairy and the tramway depot. There were two bridges which crossed the stream, the tramway and the road access into the dairy. The latter was a stone arch bridge and the tramway one was a timber baulk type.


I could not determine the exact position of the bridge until I knew how large my model of the boiler house was going to be. Once this was done the baseboard could be cut. I used a carpenters slitting saw to cut from the baseboard edge to the track, cutting at an angle of 80º to the vertical.





I then cut across between the two cuts with the aid of a series of small drill holes. I then very carefully cut, the baseboard, under the track with the slitting saw being careful not to damage either the track or the DCC spine cable. Then cutting the other side of the track using small drill hole and finishing the cuts carefully using a Stanley knife. The baseboard material was carefully removed with the aid of a very sharp chisel and the edges cleaned up with a scalpel with a new blade.



The remainder of the cutting was done with a coping saw and small holes to help cut the end. A cable retaining strap for the DCC spline had to be repositioned. A piece of ply wood was cut to size and screwed and glued into position so as to restore the strength of the baseboard.


The baseboard side was then replaced temporally. I intend replacing the side because the MDF has proved to offer very little protection.




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  • RMweb Gold

I note your comments regarding the MDF side. I find ply so much stronger than MDF. It might also look better if you remove the sleepers over the stream area and fix some bulks under the rails.

Regards Don

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On the prototype the sleepers were mounted on top of the timber baulks! These timber baulks were mounted directly in concrete abutments, which were crudely moulded using wooden shuttering. The gravel to make the concrete come from the stream bed itself.

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  • RMweb Gold

Just goes to show not every one follows normal practice. The sleepers wouldn't be doing a lot.


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Since when did HF Stephens follow usual practice! He used concrete pots to secure chairs on a passanger railway. Neither this or attatching sleepers to baulks is the usual accepted practice.

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